Geopier Ground Reinforcement Continues to Find New England Applications
Ten months after being offered as an intermediate foundation support alternative to New England in 2002, Geopier rammed aggregate piers were successfully installed at project locations in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Maine. As New England Design Associate, Design/Build Geotechnical working with Helical Drilling , Inc., Braintree MA and the Geopier Foundation Company, developed cost effective designs for each project and coordinated the successful installation and field verification testing necessary to ensure the successful application of this unique ground improvement technique.

Presently over a dozen projects have been completed in New England including projects in NH and RI. These projects include a 1-story restaurant, two gasoline service stations, a 1-story Welcome Center Facility, a 2 to 3-story residence facility, and portions of new water and sewer lines. The projects were completed in a wide variety of difficult soils including soft sensitive clay, peat and organic silt deposits, and uncontrolled and rubble fill deposits demonstrating the challenging subsurface conditions that may be addressed with Geopier Rammed Aggregate Piers. With the additions of these New England projects, more than 700 Geopier projects and over 200,000 Geopier elements have been installed across the US in the past 15 years. Specific information on these recently completed projects is available at the Geopier page of this site or by contacting Jim Wheeler at Additional information about the Geopier soil reinforcement system is available at and information about the capabilities of Helical Drilling, Inc. may be obtained at

Presently, numerous other potential Geopier project applications are being evaluated throughout New England as D/BG continues its mission of providing timely, cost-effective foundation solutions to owners, engineers and contractors.

Temporary casing permits Geopier installation below groundwater and through soft organic deposits to support building foundation and slab-on-grade at Service Station, Pittsfield, MA.

Grand & Bates Relief Sewer Project Featured in Tunnels & Tunneling Intl.
Working with Kyle Camper (Hayward Baker Inc.) and Nancy Thomson (Brierley Associates, LLC), D/BG principle, James Wheeler co-authored an article for the May 2003 issue of T&T International magazine entitled "Value Engineered Shafts in St. Louis". Focusing on the major value engineering efforts made on the project, the article also describes the design, construction and instrumented performance of the 32 and 36-ft. diameter jet-grout supported construction shafts. Designed as self supporting compression rings, these shafts provided positive control of ground movements and groundwater flow at an irregular, karstic limestone/soil interface and provided a cost effective means for rapidly excavating the shafts to permit TBM tunneling operations. Contact Jim Wheeler at for additional information or visit

Technical paper presented at North American Tunneling (NAT 2004) conference

Jim Wheeler, Principal, presented a paper coauthored with Nancy Thomson (Brierley Associates) entitled "Value Environmental Design facilitates Ground & Bates Sewer Construction" presented at the NAT 2004 conference in Atlanta, GA in May 2004. The paper describes the design-build development and construction of a jet grout supported temporary access shaft through saturated sands to provide access to a 75 year-old 90-in. conduit serving as the primary water supply for the city of Providence, RI. Contact Jim Wheeler at for further information about this paper.

D/BG Invited as Guest Speaker at Geotechnical Seminar
In response to the request of the Connecticut Society of Civil Engineers (CSCE) and the Deep Foundation Institute (DFI) D/BG Principal, Jim Wheeler has been invited to speak at the 5th CSCE/DFI Geotechnical Seminar in Berlin, CT on September 19, 2003. Mr. Wheeler's presentation, entitled "Geopier Elements for Foundation Support in Poor Soils", will describe the disign principles for rammed aggregate piers and illustrate the use of this intermediate foundation system in a wide variety of ground conditions and technical applications. Other topics to be presented at the seminar include Soil and Rock Anchors, EPS Embankment Construction, Pile Driving and Pile Load Testing Applications, and Soil Improvement Methods. Attended by over 100 people last year, this 5th local seminar promises to provide valuable information on local geotechnical and foundation construction practice. Information about the DFI may be found at Keep an eye on this web site and the CSCE web site, for the upcoming seminar announcement.

Boston's Central Artery/Tunnel Project, C011A1 Acknowledged by ACEC
January 23, 2002

BOSTON, MA - The Central Artery Tunnel (CA/T) Project, Section C11A1, I-93 Northbound Tunnel received the 2002 Grand Conceptor Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Massachusetts (ACEC/MA). The team of STV Incorporated/Parsons Transportaion Group (J/V) in association with Haley & Aldrich provided final design services for the deepest and one of the most complicated portions of the Central Artery. While working with Haley & Aldrich, Design/Build Geotechnical Principal, James R. Wheeler served for six years as the lead geotechnical engineer of record responsible for geotechnical and tunnel design services under subcontract to the Joint Venture. For additional information about this project, see Other Selected Project Descriptions at or refer to ACEC of Massachusetts at


Loading blast holes to remove bedrock for the 32 ft. diameter tunnel access shaft with the upper 65 ft. of soil supported by 4-ft. thick wall of unreinforced jet-grouted soil (Soilcrete) constructed with a series of interconnected 3-1/2 ft. diamter full and half grout columns. Grand & Bates Relief Sewer Tunnel, St. Louis. MO.

Drilled minipiles installed through granite block foundations and adjacent to active rail traffic provide additional vertical and lateral foundation support as part of the upgrade completed on the historic Canton Viaduct, Canton, MA.

Foundation forms placed immediately adjacent to a jet grout underpinned high-rise building to provide a new below-grade foundation footprint that reaches completely to the property line, Minneapolis, MN.

Railroad subgrade stabilization to limit continued embankment settlement is completed using lime injection completed from rail-mounted equipment, Rutland, VT.

A storage tank foundation is supported on a grid Vibro concrete columns (VCC) installed through soft alluvial soils, Philadelphia, PA.

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